Global: Half of consumers have no idea what an NFT is
April 4th, 2022, Graeme Bruce

Global: Half of consumers have no idea what an NFT is

Over the last year, the term non-fungible token crept into the public’s lexicon, part of a wider perceived shift to a new iteration of the world wide web that some predict will make cryptocurrency, the metaverse, and blockchain technology integral parts of our online life.

As the term NFT gets tossed around more and more, YouGov research conducted in 18 global markets shows consumer understanding of them.

Overall, nearly half of global consumers have never heard of the term (48%). Another quarter say they have heard of them, but don’t really know what they are (25%) and 19% say they have some understanding. Just 6% are confident they know exactly what they are and 2% tell us they own one.

There are notable differences between genders. Men are more likely to say they have some understanding of NFTs compared to women (23% vs. 14%) and are twice as likely to say they know exactly what they are (8% vs. 4%).

NFTs are digital assets on a blockchain that keeps track of ownership of virtual items, be they major sporting moments (like the ones on NBA’s Top Shots), video game characters, or works of art.

More NFT research

The global data shows consumers in Indonesia (39%), Hong Kong (37%), the United Arab Emirates (30%), and Spain (30%) are most likely to have at least some understanding of the blockchain-backed tokens.

In European markets such as Germany (18%), Denmark (19%), and Sweden (20%), understanding is lower. About a quarter of Brits report to have at least a little understanding (24%) and Americans slightly more (28%).

The rise of NFTs can be attributed to young tech-savvy consumers. More than a third of global consumers 18-24 tell us they have at least some understanding of NFTs (36%), a figure that shrinks among older demographics – 31% among those 25-34, 28% among those 35-44, 23% among those 45-54, and 15% among those 55 and over.

As previous YouGov research has noted, brands that are forging ahead with their own NFTs may want to ensure that education on the technology is part of their marketing plan – or be prepared to pay the consequences in their brand health.

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Methodology: The data is based on the interviews of adults aged 18 and over in 18 markets with sample sizes varying between 515 and 2,007 for each market. All interviews were conducted online in February 2022. Data from each market uses a nationally representative sample apart from Mexico and India, which use urban representative samples, and Indonesia and Hong Kong, which use online representative samples.